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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm heading out to buy some safety gear on Saturday for the impending arrival of my new toy ;D

So I'm after a bit of advice on whether I should buy a leather jacket or a textile one. I assume that a leather jacket will hold up better in a crash, but is not as waterproof whereas the textile jacket affords better rain protection, but one crash and you'll need a new one.

It doesn't rain that often where I live and winter weather is really not too bad. Certainly not down to freezing levels and below.
 
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i've been wrestling with this over the past couple of weeks myself. at present, i have a textile jacket; it's an older joe rocket hard drive. it is completely waterproof, very warm, and has pretty nice armor in the elbows and shoulders, with a pad in the back. i think i only gave $100 for the thing on e-bay. the downside is that it doesn't vent worth a crap.

so now i'm also in the market for a new jacket, prefferable perforated leather. when it gets to be about 90 here in georgia, that joe rocked will be intollerable.

hope you can pull something usefull out of my ramblings; it's still too early to make much sense. ;))
 

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Ciao,
I have spidi H2out and did whole summer (25-35C) here in Italy.
All CE protection.
Does not ventilate that much, but could be worse.
I took it because I ride a lot, and cannot optimise myself by the weather, so I want to be weather safe.
Leather jacket I have had all my life, and still have.

Tough call.

Leather sounds better for You, IMO. And it is better sliding down the street. Ofcourse depends on the leather also.

Skier
 

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As someone who has personally crash tested a leather jacket and textile pants, I have converted to full leather for all future riding. The textile riding pants (First Gear) wore through in several spots. The leather jacket, other than having damaged plastic zippers, hardly looks worn.

If you want something to survive the rain, get textile. If you want something to survive the crash, get leather.
 

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On my MSF course they talked about an experiment done once where somone through a rock off the back of a pickup truck at 60mph. They covered the rock with the material used in riding clothes. According to that test they said the leather and textile went the same distance before wearing through (something like 30 m). Denim went 1 m BTW. Now the thickness of the material I assume will have a big impact on the distances...

Having said this, my big concern is that a textile jacket may melt. And although it may be cool to have textile reinforced arms I think i will pass. I have both a textile and leather jacket, I where the textile for nice lazy rides on warm days and the leather for going fast. To me the leather just feels like it will protect you better.... The textiles do rock in hot weather!

As for rain, I highly recomend a rain suit to go over you leathers. My thinking is I am more likely to crash in the rain, so this is not the time to go lighter on the protection. I wear my snowbarding Gortex MEC gear over my full leathers, keeps me very dry.
 

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I've got an IXS Tracker that I wore last weekend &

for my MSF classes. At the slightest breeze, it was like I didn't even have one on. I got lots of compliments on it as well. ;)

so now i'm also in the market for a new jacket, prefferable perforated leather.
 
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i hadn't really considered the option of a rain-suit over leathers. sounds like the way to go, really. okay, now all i need is a wad of cash to go buy leathers. ;D
 

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I firmly believe that no one jacket will satisfy in all conditions. Frankly, I freeze my @ss off when it's below 60 in my perfed leather, regardless of what i put underneath. You can use a rain suit as a wind shell, but let's be honest... that's a PITA.

I have a textile jacket which keeps me warm in any conditions I'd consider riding in (down to 20F) but is way too hot (doesn't vent well) over about 80 and perfed leather that's good from 65 to anything I'd consider riding in (up to 100F).

I like the textile (Belstaff) but I'd really like to get a solid leather 2-piece some day in the not too distant future.

So what you have to decide is not which style is best for you, but which is the best FIRST jacket. ;)
 

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Based on what you have said - leather should do you just fine.

I think the only time you are going to need the rain gear is when you are on a multiple day journey, or it is absolutely pouring on you for 100 miles or so. In both of those case you will hopefully either packed a waterproof jacket, or see that it will be raining and know to put it on.

In my opinion - if you are commuting by choice or using the bike for pleasure, 99% of the time leather will be perfect. Then when you have enough cash for a quality textile jacket- you can get one of those as well.

If you always carry a waterproof coverall with you (which in reality probably won't happen) - you will probably already be wet by the time you decide to put it on. Leather is pretty water proof - although lots of water may not be the best thing for it.

I ride in the rain off and on for 100 mile rides and only wear my textile jacket if I know it is going to be pouring rain or sustained temps below 5 degrees. Rest of the time - leather for me.

If you want to go halvsies - get a good pair of textile pants and leather jacket - then you will only be half wet.
 

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I notice you didnt mention pants...
when I first started, I rode in jacket/jeans...once you've kissed the ground once, it's full gear EVERY time.

I have both textile and leather 2-pc suits, and I wear the textile more often.
It goes over clothes for commuting, and is more comfortable when it is really hot, cold, or wet out.
For normal nice weather and long trips , i wear the leather.
i am more comfy on the bike with it...stays in place doesnt flat or get in the way when you're moving around. also thick leather pants help you stay in the saddle longer.

you may want to check out some of the closeout gear at newenough.com and http://motorcyclecloseouts.com.
there's some good stuff in there really cheap!
 

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I have perforated leather Joe Rocket sonic jacket. Picked it up today and it isnt worth anything when its around 45-50 degrees out. I was pretty cold on the way home.
 
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Yeah, I'll agree that below about 55, you'll need layering underneath. I have a fleece lined nylon windbreaker that I wear under my perforated leathers on those occasions.(bottoms, too)
 

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In the hot humid south, mesh is the only material to keep you cool in summer. You can't force enough air through perf. leather. Sold my Vanson on Ebay. In the spring and fall, nothing feels better than a tee shirt and a good leather jacket. My Gericke V-Pilot has large zippered vents front and back to extend the temp rqnge. When it's cold, I go for textile because it seals up tighter and it waterproof. When I travel, I wear textile to avoid carrying extra rain gear. If I could only have one, it would be textile.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Thanks for all the info so far guys.

I'm in Brisbane, Australia. So summers are very humid and quite warm as well. But it is Autumn now so I might go with leather for now and see how I handle it next summer :)

For pants, I was going to start off with a pair of kevlar lined jeans. They seem quite popular over here and while not affording any weather protection, I'll only be wearing them when riding, I'll get changed at work.
 

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I've crash-tested leather numerous times. Same suit, still going strong albeit in a somewhat more ugly state than when I started out. A buddy had a very, very nasty crash in a Roadcrafter suit last week. I was impressed with how well it fared, the injuries he sustained would've happened regardless of what kind of gear he was wearing. However, you're right - the suit was trashed from sliding across the asphalt (and then from the medics cutting it off him), it did protect him from rash but my leather has held up much better to sliding in the past.

If I was commuting and doing some mild sport riding as I see most Monster riders do, I'd get a Roadcrafter just because it's so easy to wear over street clothes (in fact, I WILL get a Roadcrafter for commuting, maybe with my tax return?).

If the only riding I was doing was recreational, I'd go with quality leather.

-R.
 

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I have a mesh, textile, and leather (fashion) jacket. When it is hot outside, it is much better to ride with a mesh jacket with armor, than just a t-shirt. I have no excuse not to ride without some protection. Same thing with gloves. I have lightweight and heavyweight gloves. Pants are next! ;D
 
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anyone have any experience with the vanson mk2 challenger? looks like it's trying to be an all-around leather with good adjustable venting. . .
 

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To me, those zip down leather flaps were too cumbersome and looked funny rolled down on the outside of the jacket. The Cobra has windproof fabric curtains that fold down inside the jacket so they are not visible. I bought the Lightning (same Cobra system but 2-tone color). After a sweltering summer in Alabama, I ditched it for a Firstgear Mesh-tex.
 
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yeah, i'm trying to figure out what to do for my first sweltering summer in georgia. been looking at perf'd leather and mesh. the pricetag on mesh is a lot nicer. ;)
 
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